Leather on willow, washed down with wine
I remember all of those years go when you could take as much booze to the cricket as you could carry. In those days I hadn’t learned about the joys of wine so it was cans of Boddingtons or Kronenbourg that filled the rucksack. Then sponsorship and commercialism reared its ugly head. Carling, Tetley, Fosters and XXXX got themselves involved and the ECB realised they could make a lot of money by disallowing alcohol to be brought into the grounds and charging exorbitant prices for watered down dishwater. But amazingly, not at Lord’s!
I managed to bag tickets for Sunday at the first test of the summer and was astonished to read each person could take 2 cans of beer or a bottle of wine into the ground with them. Result. Between us, me and The Fish chose a bottle of Saint Veran and a bottle of Lirac to slurp over a period of 7 hours… Or so we thought!
By 2.30, 14 wickets had fallen and England ran out winners by 170 runs, having skittled New Zealand for 68. And we only had chance to polish off the St Veran… And delicious it was too!
Domaine Botti Saint Veran 2009, Macon, Burgundy (Wine & the Vine £13.45)
Honeydew melon, pink apples and grapefruit on nose and palate. A dash short on acidity but very tasty, with a lovely almond or cobnut finish. 88 points
That left us with half a day spare… And a bottle of Lirac to match with it!
Well as we were in walking distance of Marylebone High Street we decided a trip to the best butchers in town, The Ginger Pig on Moxon Street, was called for. We arrived at 3.11 only to find the place closes at 3.00 on a Sunday. Oh horrors of horrors! Don’t worry, I consoled myself with a trip to The Fromagerie next door… Brie de Melun (if you’ve only tried de Meux you have to give it a try!), Morbier and Appleby’s Cheshire put a smile back in my face.
But we still didn’t have anything for tea (true Northerner!). Then we stumbled upon Natural Kitchen on Marylebone High Street and a couple of veal chops later equilibrium was restored. And boy did they taste good. The Lirac was delicious, last night’s Margaux would have been perfect.
Domaine des Cigalounes Lirac 2009, Southern Rhone (Wine & the Vine £11.25)
Black cherry and dark plums from the hedgerow with a beautiful waft of herbs de Provence on the nose. The spice and fennel comes first and is beautifully balanced with black cherries and really fine and silky tannins. This is elegant and delicious. 91 points